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The Life Insurance Blog

Helping millions of Americans become educated
in making decisions about their life insurance needs


Why Waiting Until Retirement to Buy Life Insurance is Foolish (and What to Do Instead)

Oct 23, 2014 6:30:00 PM

“I don’t need life insurance. I’m not even old enough to stop working.”

Sound familiar? You may have arrived at that same conclusion.

In a perfect world, your assumption would be correct. Unfortunately, life doesn’t follow that same logic.

Unforeseen events, such as an unexpected illness, bankruptcy or accidents can happen at any time, years before you retire from your job. Insurance can save your family from any undue stress that arises from out-of-the blue hardships.

1) The younger you are, the less you’ll pay: It’s never too late to buy life insurance, but if you wait too long, it could be more expensive. The average life expectancy is around 79 years. The closer you are to this age when you sign up for life insurance, the more expensive your premiums will be. Another advantage to purchasing life insurance while you’re still young and healthy is that your coverage won’t change if you’re diagnosed with a serious illness. It’s much harder to qualify for life insurance if you’ve been diagnosed prior to applying.

dont_wait_to_buy_life_insurance2) You may retire later than you planned: People are living longer and retiring later. The average age range for retirement is 65-69 years old, a few years ago, it was 62-65. Some are leaving the workforce later by choice, others due to economic circumstances. The 2008 recession rattled many people (and their investment portfolios) to the core. Many found that their savings dwindled overnight and have delayed their retirement. Many employer-based insurance policies only cover your basic needs. Have you already reached retirement age? If so, are you currently receiving Social Security? If you die, those checks will stop. If this happens, how will your widow make ends meet?

3) Plan for the unthinkable, now: No one wants to face his or her death, but the truth is the earlier you accept your mortality, the better. We understand if planning for the inevitable makes you uncomfortable. But there’s nothing morbid about providing your loved ones with peace of mind. You may not feel a sense of urgency to buy insurance, but if your family has difficulties paying for your funeral, that creates unnecessary worry and stress on them.

4) Your family has long-term debt: One of the biggest misconceptions about life insurance is that it’s all about the recipient. Life insurance isn’t about you; it’s about protecting your loved one’s future. That’s why thinking broadly can help you plan wisely for your family. For example, if you’re married and live in a house, have you paid off your mortgage in full? If you were to pass away tomorrow, would your spouse be able to continue making payments? If you have a child in college and he or she is relying on your income, how will they cope without your salary? These are the hard questions that you must ask yourself before you set out to buy a policy.

Instead of waiting for your career to draw to a close, we strongly advise that you purchase life insurance today. The future is uncertain, and none of us can know when disaster will strike. But the right life insurance can be a lifeline that your family depends on for years to come.

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